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Cleveland Utilities Broadband Public Forum – March 8, 2023

Cleveland Utilities held a public forum last night at the Tom Wheeler Training Center.

The meeting allowed members of the public to comment and provide feedback to CU’s Board of Directors and staff in relation to CU’s Broadband Business Plan.

The plan aims to create a 4th division of CU for broadband services. The plan will cost approximately $72 million. Of that cost, $8 million will be in the form of an interdivisional loan from the electric division and a Public Issued Debt will make up $64 million of the cost. The plan is expected to be cash flow positive between years 2-3 and pay for itself between years 10-12.

An approximate timeline for the plan was also presented. The process begins now and stretches through the year 2026.

The goal is to eventually make broadband service available for the full electric footprint area.

Officials noted that the broadband project will not raise electric rates.

Members of the public were encouraged to speak at the meeting.

The plan is posted and is public information. You can view the plan at clevelandutilities.com

WCLE’s Ryan Felton caught up with Cleveland Utilities President and CEO, Tim Henderson after the meeting. Here is what he had to say:

The board said it plans to take a deeper dive in future board meetings and then will approach the City Council for their consideration of the plan.